12/07/15 - 14:00
Vannes - Plumelec
Tour de France • Stage9

Vannes - Plumelec

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So, BMC with two riders in the top three on GC now with Van Garderen trailing Froome by 12 seconds and Greg Van Avermaet in third at 27. Peter Sagan drops to third at 38 seconds but retains the white and green jersey. Alberto Contador completes the top five at 1:03 but Vincenzo Nibali drops further back...


It's all smiles in the BMC camp after their nail-biting victory over Sky in the team time trial.


So BMC win the 28km TTT by one second over Team Sky to see Tejay Van Garderen move up into second place on GC, 12 seconds down on Chris Froome.


Sky miss out by less than a second! BMC win!


Sky digging deep on the home straight. Froome, Porte, Thomas, Konig and Roche are there - but the latter is really struggling to hold on - and there are a lot of looks behind...


It's Froome who leads them onto the final climb to the finish. They still have six riders so can afford to lose one. They passed through the third check... we still don't know - it hasn't been announced. The suspense! Yes, here it is, they were 5 seconds up... Poels is the first to peel off on the climb.


Sky are now approaching the foot of the final climb - they're the last team on the road and only they can beat BMC now. Roche and Poels are struggling to hold on.


Here come BMC to the line - and they take the lead by four seconds! New target time of 32:15 for Tejay Van Garderen's outfit.


BMC are down to just five riders as they start the punchy final climb of the Cote de Cadoudal. Big pressure - they cannot shed a soul before the finish... But they have the best time at the third check - 1 second quicker than Movistar. Further back, Sky are down to six riders.


Green jersey Peter Sagan leads Tinkoff-Saxo across the line to set the second best time - 24 seconds down on Movistar. Quintana is all smiles - he will have taken 24 seconds back on Contador on the overall standings.


Sky one slender second ahead of BMC at the second check - we have a real fight on our hands!


It's the second best time for Tinkoff-Saxo at the third check at the foot of the final climb - 24 seconds down on Movistar.


Sky riding quite beautifully with eight riders still intact. They're on the dowhill drag ahead of the second climb.


Etixx-Quick step finish 41 seconds down on Movistar to keep Rigoberto Uran's GC hopes alive. Not bad considering they did it without Tony Martin...


BMC down to seven riders as they pass through the second check four seconds to the better of Movistar.


Tinkoff-Saxo have slowed - they're 13 seconds down on Movistar at the second check despite leading the Spanish team by 6 seconds at the opening check.


Not good for Ag2R-La Mondiale - the French team of Messieurs Bardet and Peraud cross the finish line 1:20 down on leaders Movistar.


Chris Froome leading Sky up an early incline on this demanding course. He peels off the front after a large pull. And they have gone through the check on parity with BMC. It's balanced on a knife edge - all level at the first check.


Giant Alpecin a huge 1:33 down on Movistar at the finish. That will damage Barguil's GC hopes.


But BMC have bettered Tinkoff-Saxo's time by seven seconds at the first check. Game on!


Tinkoff-Saxo with the new fastest time at the first check: 11:01 and two seconds clear of Astana.


Giant Alpecin have recovered a bit from their slow start. The team of Warren Barguil (currently wearing the white jersey) and John Degenkolb are 51 seconds down in 5th place at the second check.


Just five riders for Movistar at the finish - including those men Quintana and Valverde. They set a new target time of 32:19 - a full 31 seconds quicker than Astana. Job well done.


The last team to roll down the ramp is Team Sky. Can Chris Froome hold on to his yellow jersey today?


Horrible time for Katusha at the finish - it's worse than Bretagne but better than MTN and GreenEdge. 1:18 down on Astana - and Joaquim Rodriguez won't be happy.


The Etixx-QuickStep team of Mark Cavendish have gone through the first check 6 seconds down on Astana.


Despite that disarray, Movistar have the best time at the second check - 18 seconds clear of Astana.


Down the ramp roll BMC, the penultimate team to go on course. Can they get their man Tejay Van Garderen in yellow?


BOOM: Movistar have imploded on one of the climbs - one rider, Quintana I think, rides clear, three chase, and five are dropped! All over the shop.


Vincenzo Nibali: "The wind changed all the time - it was a headwind then a tail wind. I think we've done a really good team time trial. We were strong and in the last few kilometres I dictated the rhythm with Scarponi."


Down the ramp go the Tinkoff-Saxo team of Alberto Contador and Peter Sagan. A good ride today could see Sagan into yellow today - the current green and white jersey is 11 seconds down on Sky's Froome on GC at the moment.


Movistar have only set the third best time at the first check - four seconds down on Astana.


The Astana riders who finished as a five-man unit were Nibali, Fuglsang, Kangert, Scarponi and Westra. Speaking to Juan Antonion Flecha, an ill Scarponi said: "it was really tough from start to finish with no point to have a rest throughout. We've done well and I feel we've managed to do ok. I have some stomach problems at the moment, a day and a night with fever, but that happens on the Tour. I'm pleased we have a rest day tomorrow."


The Ag2R-La Mondiale team of yesterday's stage winner Alexis Vuillermoz are on course. Today will be very important for their GC hopes Jean Christophe Peraud and Romain Bardet...


Here come Astana - and they're down to just five men after shedding another two on the Cote de Cadoudal. It's enough for the best time so far - but only just, by 3 seconds. Nibali will lose more time today.


Fabian, where art thou? Trek come home 46 seconds down on IAM Cycling at the finish, which may see Bauke Mollema drop out of the top ten tonight.


LottoNL-Jumbo cross the line with five riders - and they're 35 seconds down on leaders IAM Cycling at the finish.


Let's see how Astana are going after that first climb... and come over the line 4 seconds ahead of IAM. They still have seven riders so neither Gruzdev nor Taaramae has caught back on.


Down the ramp go Movistar, one of the favourites for today. They have specialists Malori, Castroviejo and Dowsett, plus GC hopes Quintana and Valverde. They should - on paper - post an impressive time. They certainly will post the best effort when they cross the line - it just depends if that will be enough to stave off Sky and BMC.


The MTN-Qhubeka team of polka dot jersey Daniel Teklehaimanot have toiled in this TTT. Edvald Boasson Hagen drives them to the line - and it's only eighth place for the South African team, who are the slowest besides Orica-GreenEdge.


Trek are down to six riders - they were only seventh at the first check, 19 down on Astana.


Astana lead IAM by one solitary second at the first check despite shedding two riders on the first rise.


IAM were leading at Cadoudal at the third check by 19 seconds and they're now approaching the finish line after the punchy climb. And they do it - the new target time by IAM Cycling, who have shaved 10 seconds off Lampre's effort. They lead with 32:53.


Astana have split on the first climb with six riders - including Nibali - dropping three. One fights back but Gruzdev and Taaramae are distanced.


IAM Cycling continue their strong ride - they are 10 seconds ahead of Lampre at the second check after 20.5km. Lotto-Soudal are third at 32 seconds and Bora-Argon two seconds further back.


Neither FDJ nor Europcar could beat Lampre's time at the finish. Pinot's FDJ are 45 seconds down and Rolland's Europcar are 54 seconds down.


The Astana team of defending champion Vincenzo Nibali roll down the ramp. The pressure is on: besides Nibali, the best placed Astana rider yesterday was 52nd at Mur-de-Bretagne. The Italian will be hoping they were just keeping themselves fresh for today. Nibali lost 10 seconds to his rivals yesterday and trails Froome by 1:48 on GC.


IAM Cycling have just posted the best time at the first check ahead of the first of three climbs. They lead Lampre by 7 seconds.


Next up is Trek Factory Racing - who will have to do this without their specialist Fabian Cancellara, who crashed out of the race after stage 3 when wearing yellow.


The crowds are pretty astonishing here in Brittany. LottoNL-Jumbo are the latest team to roll down the ramp.


Bora-Argon 18 are on the course now - in fact, they have been for a while. They're approaching the second check and they're 23:56 down on leaders Lampre.


It's a new fastest time from Lampre-Merida, who finish with five riders in a time of 33:03 - that's 58 seconds quicker then Bretagne and 4:10 over Orica.


It's worth mentioning that the time cut today is 30% so the winning team today would have to have a real storming ride if they wanted to eject their colleagues from Orica-GreenEdge... and if that happened, you'd expect the race jury to be lenient given the circumstances.


Bretagne-Séché Environnement are the second team to arrive at the finish. They set a target time of 34:01 - that's 3:12 quicker than Orica-GreenEdge.


FDJ's roster includes local rider Benoît Vaugrenard who was born in Vannes 33 years ago. He's making his first appearance in the Tour since 2010.


Orica-GreenEdge will finish with their full compliment of six riders - a brave effort from the team ripped apart and ravaged by injury. It's Luke Durbridge who sets the tempo. They won the last team time trial on the Tour in 2013 but they're odds on to finish last in this one. Their target time is 37:13. The Yates twins will plummet down the standings.


IAM Cycling have quite a tight unit featuring many former national time trial champions plus Matty Braendle, who broke the Hour Record earlier in the year before the big guns came in. They're still looking for a maiden win in a Grand Tour...


Next up it's the Lotto-Soudal team of former green jersey (and double stage winner) Andre Greipel and high-flying Tony Gallopin, currently fourth on GC 26 seconds down on Froome.


Lampre are the early pace-setters at the first check with a target time of 11:11. Bretagne are 24 seconds down in second and Orica-GreenEdge a whopping 1:45 down. Remember - the Australian team are down to six riders after all those injuries in the opening week.


Today's time checks come at Lesneve (10km), Le Croiseau (20.5km), Cadoudal (26km) and then the finish atop the Cote de Cadoudal in Plumelec (28km).


Team Sky, although sixth in the team standings, will be last to leave by virtue of having the yellow jersey on Froome's shoulders. They will roll down the ramp at 15:45 - five minutes after BMC.


The teams are leaving in reverse order with regards to the current team classification. Team Europcar are next - they could loose a shed-load of time. Pierre Rolland may find himself 15 minutes down this evening...


The FDJ team of Thibaut Pinot have rolled down the ramp. They've made a huge effort in this discipline in the off-season so it will be interesting to see how they fare out there. Remember, they're one man down following the withdrawal of William Bonnet after that high-speed crash in stage 3. It's a shaky start for the French team, who are all over the place on an early corner.


It's a tricky course out there - with three climbs including the final punchy ramp into Plumelec. The last time the race came to Plumelec was for the first stage in 2008 when Alejandro Valverde zipped up the 6% Cote de Cadoudal to take the win and yellow jersey after organisers eschewed the usual prologue time trial.


Stage 9 (Vannes to Plumelec 28km TTT). In a nutshell: With three gentle climbs, this medium-length team time trial should shake up the overall classification ahead of the first rest day.


Both Bretagne-Séché Environnement and, just now, Lampre-Merida have rolled down the ramp - so we have three teams on course now. They are leaving at five-minute intervals.


Froome's Sky and Van Garderen's BMC are the favourites for the time trial today so we can expect either the Briton or the American in yellow tonight - unless Sagan's Tinkoff-Saxo pull one out of the bag...


Chris Froome (Team Sky) retained his yellow jersey and took 10 precious seconds off rival Vincenzo Nibali (Astana). Froome leads Peter Sagan by 11 seconds and Tejay Van Garderen by 13 seconds on GC.


A reminder that, yesterday, Alexis Vuillermoz of Ag2R-La Mondiale gave home fans their first taste of success in the Tour de France with victory in stage eight at Mûr-de-Bretagne. Third on the Mur de Huy last Monday, Vuillermoz underlined his fine form with a blistering final climb up the 'Alpe d'Huez of Brittany' to leave the race favourites in his wake and secure the biggest win of his career.


The first team to roll down the ramp is the Orica-GreenEdge team that entered the Tour as favourites for this event - but who start as rank outsiders following the withdrawal of three of their key riders in the opening week: Simon Gerrans, Daryl Impey and Michael Albasini.


Hello and welcome to live coverage of stage nine of the Tour de France - a demanding 28km team time trial from Vannes to Plumelec in Brittany, north-west France.